Darcey Bussell

Darcey Bussell


4/27/1969, London, England

Birth Name

Darcey Andrea Crittle


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Darcey was for most of her career Britain's leading prima ballerina. She studied dance at the Royal Ballet School and joined the Sadler's Wells Royal Ballet in 1987, becoming its principal soloist only two years later. She created the roles of Princess Rose in Prince of the Pagodas,…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • In 2001, her daughter Phoebe was born seven weeks early, leaving Darcey suffering from pre-eclampsia.

    • One of her great-grandfathers was a seaman from Southampton who went down in the Titanic.

    • A full-length portrait of Darcey by Allen Jones RA was commissioned by the National Portrait Gallery and unveiled on 23 May 1994.

    • She won the Prix de Lausanne in 1986.

    • In 1990, she received three Awards: the Evening Standard Ballet Award, the Variety Club of Great Britain's Sir James Garreras Award for Most Promising Newcomer, and the title 'Dancer of the Year' from London's Dance and Dancers magazine.

    • She was appointed an OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) in 1995, for services to dance, and on 17 June 2006 was promoted to CBE (Commander of the same Order).

    • Darcey is married to Angus Forbes, an Australian banker, and they have two daughters, Phoebe Olivia, born in 2001, and Zoe Sophia, born in 2004.

    • As an actress, she played Annabel in Ferdinand Fairfax's movie True Blue about the Oxford and Cambridge boat race.

    • Her first leading role in a ballet came at the age of nineteen, when she played Princess Rose in Sir Benjamin Britten's The Prince of the Pagodas.

    • In 2005, she co-hosted an episode of Comic Relief Does Fame Academy.

    • Her first screen appearance was as the Prima Ballerina in Brian Large's Gala Tribute to Tchaikovsky (1993).

  • Quotes

    • Darcey Bussell: ( on Sir Kenneth MacMillan) He needed a new muse. I was lucky. I was in the right place at the right time.

    • Darcey Bussell: (on joining the cast of the song-and-dance musical Viva la Diva, 2006) Ballet has been my focus for twenty-eight years. Now I am stepping into a variety of different styles of dance that I have always had a passion to perform.

    • Darcey Bussell: The creation of the Dance Manifesto is an important step forward in the development of dance in this country and I am proud to have been able to present it to the government on behalf of the British dance industry.

    • Darcey Bussell: (of her daughter) Phoebe may have some of my dancing genes - she points her toes when she is being fed.

    • Darcey Bussell: I've had a sweet pea named after me and a horse named after me but never before a building. It's very exciting.

    • Darcey Bussell: The Sugar Plum is one of the most technically difficult pieces, really exhausting and strenuous.

    • Darcey Bussell: Making the decision to cease being a Principal of the Royal Ballet has not been easy for me. I am devoted to the Company and always will be. I am so fortunate to enter my nineteenth season in good health feeling passionate and enthusiastic about my work. However, I have always wanted to end my full-time career still dancing the full classical repertoire at the standard to which I aspire. I will now have more time to spend with my family and be able to be more selective with repertoire choices.